Q:

How do you clean a humidifier?

A:

Quick Answer

Clean humidifiers using 3 percent hydrogen peroxide to remove scale, and rinse thoroughly. Change the filter as recommended by the manufacturer. Keep the humidifier clean by using demineralized water, emptying the tank and drying the unit daily.

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Full Answer

  1. Remove the scale buildup

    Use 3 percent hydrogen peroxide to dissolve any scale buildup in the humidifier every three days. The lime that forms inside the unit harbors bacteria. Mayo Clinic recommends discarding any humidifier where the deposits are so thick they are no longer removable with hydrogen peroxide.

  2. Rinse the unit

    Using water, rinse any chemicals you use to clean the humidifier before filling it. Operation of the machine has the potential to vaporize any chemicals left in the tank into the air you breathe.

  3. Change filters regularly

    If the humidifier is equipped with a filter, change it per the manufacturer's directions. When putting the unit in storage, discard the filter, and replace it before using the device again.

  4. Maintain a clean humidifier

    Empty the tank daily, and dry all surfaces to reduce the potential for scale buildup and bacterial growth. Use distilled or deionized water, which has a lower mineral content, to prevent scale inside the unit and the white powdery residue that forms on surfaces around the machine as the moisture evaporates.

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